Sandhill2006 Pinot Gris, King Family Vineyard
Just prior to the 2006 vintage, a $193,000 press was installed at Calona Vineyards winery where wine is made for several related labels, including Sandhill. Winemaker Howard Soon considers this to be the best Pinot Gris he has ever made. At least some of the credit, he says, belongs to the new press which gave him the ability for the first time to do gentle whole-cluster pressing of the fruit.
Some credit also goes to growers Rod and Don King, former apple growers who converted their orchards to grapes between 1992 and 1997. They’ve never regretted it. And Rod King maintains that Pinot Gris is becoming British Columbia’s signature white wine.
Howard Soon describes this wine as a “lean, zappy, cool climate” Pinot Gris. Those are good adjectives for a wine that is crisp, tart and fresh, with aromas and flavours of citrus and pears and with a vibrantly edgy finish. 88 points.
Reviewed July 17, 2007 by John Schreiner.
Other reviewed wines from Sandhill
John Schreiner has been covering the wines of British Columbia for the past 30 years and has written 10 books on the wines of Canada and BC. He has judged at major competitions and is currently a panel member for the Lieutenant Governor’s Awards of Excellence in Wine. Both as a judge and as a wine critic, he approaches each wine not to find fault, but to find excellence. That he now finds the latter more often than the former testifies to the dramatic improvement shown by BC winemaking in the past decade.